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1 Many male descendants fought in the Revolutionary War. Two prominent descendants were John Hanson, president of the Federation, and John Morton, signer of the Declaration of Independence. The Swedes, together with the Finns in the colony, introduced the notched-log cabin to the New World.

2 History of the Scandinavians and Successful Scandinavians in the United States, Volume I and II, second revised edition, compiled and edited by O. N. Nelson (Minneapolis, 1900), p. 264. Nelson did not include the Finns in his study. Table XI shows "the number of persons in the United States having Scandinavian parents; but the persons enumerated ... may have been born in Scandinavia, America, or anywhere else—according to the United States Census of 1890, published in 1894." The figures quoted above are also taken from Nelson's book.

3 Otto Robert Landelius, Swedish Place Names in North America, Raymond Jarvi, ed., Karin Franzen, transl. (Carbondale and Edwardsville, IL, 1985), pp. 216-22. The founder of the first Swedish settlement in Texas was Svante M. Swenson from Barkeryd, Småland. He came to New York in 1836 and to Texas in 1838.

4 Erik Helmer Pedersen, Drömmen om Amerika (Copenhagen, 1985), n.p.; Peter L. Peterson, "Oslo on the Texas Plains," Norwegian-American Studies, n.p., 28 (1979) 138-156. (J. R. Christianson to the author, June 6, 1988, TLS.) There were many other Scandinavian colonies in Texas.

5 Decorah Posten (Decorah, IA) Sep. 24, 1895. A Norwegian-American newspaper. Microfilm, Luther College Library, Decorah, IA.

6 Oscar Johnson (Johansson) was born Mar. 6, 1858 in Säfsnäs parish, Dalarna. He emigrated from Korsnäs in Hosjö parish (Falun) in October 1879 (Courtesy, Lars Dahlgren, Emigrant Register, Karlstad, Sweden, and Arvid Wallin, Falun.) While living in Chicago, Oscar Johnson married Josephina Swenson, born Feb. 22, 1864, at Degerfors Bruk, Värmland. According to the Federal Census for 1910, she came to the US in 1880. One source states that Oscar Johnson graduated from the School of Mining in Falun, Dalarna, with a degree in Mining and Iron Manufacturing (History of Alabama, 1927). However, the Hosjö parish records list no occupation for him. At the time of his emigration, he was listed with his parents in the community of Korsnäs Iron Works. His father worked in the blast furnace. The 1910 Federal Census lists him as a real estate broker, whose farm was mortgage free. At that time, the family was living in the 9th Precinct, Loxley and Robertsdale. He was naturalized. Oscar Johnson died in Silverhill Sep. 13, 1929. His wife passed away in Silverhill Apr. 29, 1940.

7 Elvera Charlotte, b. Oct. 25, 1887 in Chicago, married Philip George Armstrong in Silverhill on Apr. 20, 1916. He was born Feb. 2, 1882 in Evanston, IL and died Feb. 9, 1960. His parents were from Malmä, Skane, Sweden and the original family name was Almstrom. See Interview with Elvera Armstrong. The couple had two children, Donald B.(1917-1974) and Elvera (Ellie) Josephine (1921-1967). Donald married Lucille Russell and settled in South Carolina. The couple had 3 children. Their son, Donald B. Armstrong, Jr. lives in Daphne, AL. Ellie married Milton Cline, a native of Cleveland, OH. The couple had one daughter, Sandra Kathleen. Mr. Cline, who has an automotive parts business in Robertsdale is the adoptive father of his grandson, Zachary Jason. Zachary's brother, Christopher Brandon Flowers also lives in the Silverhill area.

8 Oscar Johnson's father, John Peter Johnson (Jan Petter Jonsson), an ironworker in the blast furnace of Korsnäs Iron Works, was born Nov. 5, 1825 in Säfsnäs parish, Dalarna, and emigrated in 1881 from Korsnäs, Hosjö parish near Falun together with his wife, Amanda Charlotta Bark, b. Apr. 15, 1828 in Säfsnäs (died in Chicago 1892) and his daughters: Matilda Charlotta, (Hilda), b. Nov. 2, 1855; Anna Lovisa (Lois), b. Dec. 21, 1868; Ida Wilhelmina, b. Mar. 19, 1871, and one granddaughter (less than 1 year old, the daughter of Hilda). Johnson's daughters, Emma, 27, and Amanda, b. Aug. 17, 1858, emigrated from Korsnäs in 1880. The three youngest daughters were listed as living at home. John P. Johnson died July 14, 1909 in Silverhill. Emma married Gustaf Anderson, iron moulder (Chicago). Hilda married Frederick Alfstrom, gas manufacturer (Chicago). Amanda married Olaf Nordine, millwright (Fairhope, AL). Ida married Axel Okerblom, auditor for the International Harvester Company (Melbourne, Australia), and Lovisa (Lois) married Louis B. Widell, a cabinetmaker who died in Chicago. His widow then moved to Silverhill. Date and place of birth and emigration data for these people have been received from Sweden, courtesy, Lars Dahlgren, Emigrant Register, Karlstad, and Arvid Wallin, Falun.
         The younger daughter of Oscar Johnson, Agnes Elida, was born Nov. 13, 1890 in Chicago. In 1920 she married G. W. Utter, who was born in Chicago Sep. 17, 1886, and arrived from Fairmont, MN in 1920. She died in 1976 and he in 1979. The couple is listed in the membership book of Zion Lutheran Church in Silverhill with the following children: Oscar Walfried b. Aug. 25, 1922; Gustav Clifford, b. Apr. 11, 1925; Elida Marie b. Jul. 22, 1926; Ralph Vincent b. Feb. 21, 1928; Paul Edwin b. Jun. 9, 1929; and Philip Arthur b. Feb. 21, 1931.

9 Typed manuscript recently given to the Silverhill Library. Copy courtesy of Ted Forsman, Silverhill. The writer did not identify himself, but Mr. Forsman says that it was written by Charles Norman, who typed the manuscript with one hand. (He had only one arm.) Norman was of the Baptist faith and sang in a quartette together with Bob Linden. We don't know when Norman arrived in the colony, but he says that he was there during the first skede (phase), which according to him was through 1899. Together with brother, Patrik, he built the first cotton gin and flour mill in Silverhill in 1904. Charles Norman was the mayor of Silverhill around 1930.
         Ted Forsman is the son of Arthur Forsman, who was one of ten children of O. P. Forsman, originally from Gavie, Sweden. The family arrived in Silverhill from Kansas on Christmas Eve, 1903.

10 The first land purchase was for 1,500 acres. The deed was dated in June, 1896.

11 Dr. and Mrs. E. C. Slosson and two daughters had lived south of Silverhill since 1888, where they raised sheep. They were originally from Illinois. Westerlund died early. His widow then married Theodore Johnson, the owner of the supply store.

12 Otto Solberg was the first to till the colony land. In Sweden, he was one of Charles XVI's guardsmen.

13 "Svenska kolonien Silverhill, Baldwin County, Alabama: Framtidens Land" (The Swedish Colony Silverhill, Alabama: The Land of the Future) published by Svea Land Company, Room 512, Chicago Opera House Building, 112 S. dark Street, Chicago, 111. Oscar Johnson, Mng'r, Silverhill, Baldwin County, Alabama. The cover carried a photograph of Oscar Johnson's home in Silverhill. n.d. (Armstrong Collection, Silverhill). Microfilmed by Lennart Setterdahl in 1978. Apparently, the hotel, built in 1899, was under construction when the pamphlet was published.

14 Fosterlandet (Chicago, IL), Feb. 8, 1905. Swedish-American weekly.

15 Fosterlandet, Feb. 15, 1905.

16 Fosterlandet, Feb. 15, 1905. All ads in Swedish translated by the author.

17 Claus Frisk was born Sep. 24, 1853 and emigrated in 1892. He arrived in Silverhill in 1910, possibly from Wisconsion. In 1908 he had married Mathilda, b. Dec. 3, 1869. (Zion Lutheran Church records microfilmed by the Emigrant Institute, Växjö, Sweden, henceforth abbreviated SEI. Copies at Swenson Swedish Immigration Research Center, Augustana College, Rock Island, IL, henceforth abbreviated SSIRC.)

18 Possibly Johan Alfred Isakson b. Jan. 29, 1855 in Jonkoping's lan. His wife Anna Charlotta was born Aug. 24, 1839 in Kalmar lan. They arrived in the United States in 1881 and joined the Covenant Church in 1902. (Microfilm SEI, copies SSIRC).

19 Paul Anderson, b. Jan. 5, 1896 in a sodhouse in Kearney, NE. His parents were from Rydaholm, Småland, Sweden, and came to Nebraska in 1862. They moved to Silverhill in 1913. Paul's father, Andrew Anderson, died in 1917. His mother, Christina Johnson, lived until she was 101 years old.

20 Built in 1898 it is a National Historical Landmark. It is now a public library.

21 Robert Linden was born Feb. 6, 1907 in Silver Hill. His parents came to Silverhill in 1904. His father, Nels Person, was from Kristianstad, Skane, Sweden. Interview by Lennart Setterdahl, January 15, 1991, American Friends Oral History Project. The Lindcr family belonged to the Baptist Church.

22 Interview conducted by Lennart Setterdahl, Jan. 30, 1978 with Ted Forsman and his mother, Ulrika Fredrika (Lindstrom), b. 1886 in Oppmanna, near Kristianstad, Skane, who emigrated in 1904 to Blair, Nebraska, where a brother lived. She married O. P. Forsman in Silverhill.

23 Alice Johnson was born Sep. 12, 1904, in Sister Bay, WI. Her father, Carl Robert Seaquist, was born in Sweden. She met her husband on a visit with her parents to Silverhill. Emery and Alice Johnson farmed in Silverhill. Interview by Lennart Settcrdahl, Jan. 15, 1991, American Friends Oral History Project.

24 Gustav Clifford Utter (b. Apr. 11, 1925) has a degree from Auburn University, Alabama. He worked for 40 years as an inspector for U.S. Customs at Port Canaveral, Florida. He has recently retired in Silverhill together with his wife, Hazel, born in Minnesota. The couple has one daughter, who lives in Mississippi. One of his brothers was a veterinarian in Sherburn, Minnesota, and his sister lives in Welcome, Minnesota. Only one brother, Ralph, remained in Silverhill. Interview by Lennart Setterdahl, Jan. 16, 1991, American Friends Oral History Project.
         The younger daughter of Oscar Johnson, Agnes Elida, was born Nov. 13, 1890 in Chicago. In 1920 she married G. W. Utter, who was born in Chicago Sep. 17, 1886, and arrived from Fairmont, MN in 1920. She died in 1976 and he in 1979. The couple is listed in the membership book of Zion Lutheran Church in Silverhill with the following children: Oscar Walfried b. Aug. 25, 1922; Gustav Clifford, b. Apr. 11, 1925; Elida Marie b. Jul. 22, 1926; Ralph Vincent b. Feb. 21, 1928; Paul Edwin b. Jun. 9, 1929; and Philip Arthur b. Feb. 21, 1931.

25 Hazeltine Lyrene, b. May 28, 1925, in Manistee, MI. Her father, Sixten Edhegard of Stockholm, Sweden, had been a Baptist pastor in Belgian Congo before coming to the United States. Interview by Lennart Setterdahl, Jan. 16, 1991, American Friends Oral History Project. Mrs. Lyrene is a volunteer at the Oscar Johnson Memorial Library.

26 History of Alabama, pp. 495-96. The funeral for Oscar Johnson was at the Zion Lutheran Church in Silverhill, but he was listed as a non-member at the time of his death on September 13, 1929. Neither he nor his wife has been found in the membership records. The daughters joined the church as adults. Johnson became the first mayor of Silverhill, which in this book is written Silver Hill.

27 Dr. O. F. E. Winberg, "Scandinavians at Silverhill," A Brief History of Baldwin County, (n.d. n.p.) Photocopy. The Silverhill Library.

28 Edgren was the editor of Nya Wecko Posten, a Baptist paper published in Chicago. He owned land in Silverhill and resided there periodically. He took the initiative to the founding of the congregation and donated 3 lots for the church and the parsonage. Oscar Johnson provided the lumber. Josef Johanson was paid $1.75 a day to oversee the builders, who for the most part were volunteers. C. Johnson and Chas Forsberg raised funds. ("The Founding of the Silverhill Colony.")

29 The building was a school house at the time. Oscar Johnson was not a member of the congregation.

30 Evangelical Covenant Church, Silverhill, AL, Historical Sketch. Microfilm SEI and SSIRC.

31 The first members were: Sam Jacobson, Hugo Vallin, Herbert Jacobson, Jonas Hammarstrom, Lina Hammarstrom, Gilbert Jacobson, Bengt Johnson, P. M. Johanson, Carl Johan Swenson, Emma Kristina Swenson, P. W. Paulson and wife, Lars Peterson, Tilda Peterson, Erik ^Ulrickson, and Mrs. Otto Anderson, (History of Zion Lutheran Church, Silverhill, Alabama" by Anna Under Anderson, microfilmed by the Emigrant Institute, Växjö, Sweden. Copy at SSIRC.)

32 Emma Kristina Swenson was born in 1871 in Eksjo, Småland, Sweden, and emigrated in 1892. Her husband, Carl Johan Swenson, arrived in the U.S. in 1887. Their three oldest children were born in St. Peter, MN, 1895-1901, and the youngest in Silverhill. The family moved to St. Peter in 1920. (The membership book for Zion Lutheran Church, Silverhill. Microfilm, SEI and SSIRC.)

33 Elvera Charlotte, b. Oct. 25, 1887 in Chicago, married Philip George Armstrong in Silverhill on Apr. 20, 1916. He was born Feb. 2, 1882 in Evanston, IL and died Feb. 9, 1960. His parents were from Maimo, Skane, Sweden and the original family name was Almstrom. See Interviewwith Elvera Armstrong. The couple had two children, Donald B.(1917-1974) and Elvera (Ellie) Josephine (1921-1967). Donald married Lucille Russell and settled in South Carolina. The couple had 3 children. Their son, Donald B. Armstrong, Jr. lives in Daphne, AL. Ellie married Milton Cline, a native of Cleveland, OH. The couple had one daughter, Sandra Kathleen. Mr. Cline, who has an automotive parts business in Robertsdale is the adoptive father of his grandson, Zachary Jason. Zachary's brother, Christopher Brandon Flowers also lives in the Silverhill area.
        Private interview by Lennart Setterdahl, January 13, 1978.

34 She said it was in January of 1897, but since her father did not start to build the house until 1897, it must have been in January of 1898.

35 History of Alabama states that he followed his profession of engineering in Chicago, retiring in 1891. It also says that he was a milling engineer in Sweden.

36 Oscar Johnson's sister, Ida, and her husband, Axel Okerblom, lived in Melbourne, Australia.

37 Anna Linder Anderson wrote: "It was through this family that much of the colony land was purchased. Dr. Slosson made countless trips on horseback to assist ill and needy people." ("History of Zion Lutheran Church, Silverhill, Alabama".)

38 Paul Anderson, b. Jan. 5, 1896 in a sodhouse in Kearney, NE. His parents were from Rydaholm, Småland, Sweden, and came to Nebraska in 1862. They moved to Silverhill in 1913. Paul's father, Andrew Anderson, died in 1917. His mother, Christina Johnson, lived until she was 101 years old. Interview by Lennart Setterdahl, January 15, 1991. American Friends Oral History Project.

39 Decorah Posten, June 8 and 30, 1896. Microfilm, Luther College Library, Decorah, IA.